Introduction to Nursing Care Plan for an Asthma Attack
An asthma attack is a sudden worsening of the symptoms associated with asthma, including breathlessness, wheezing and coughing. When an asthma attack is severe, it can be life-threatening. Treatment for an asthma attack should begin as soon as possible and involves providing medication (usually via inhaler or nebulizer) and managing the person’s airway. A nursing care plan is important in order to provide comprehensive care to someone having an acute asthma attack.
Breathing Pattern: Understand the breathing pattern of the patient, the rate and depth of breathing, signs of extra effort or difficulty in breathing, as this will assess the severity of the attack. Also use a peak expiratory flow meter if available.
Medication Use: Determine what medications the patient has taken and how often. This could give you an understanding of the current state of the patient’s asthma.
Current Symptoms: Get a detailed history from the patient of the current symptoms experienced and their possible triggers.
Past Medical History: Collect information about the patient’s past medical history – such as information about any past hospitalisations due to asthma, previous encounters with asthma, family/genetic vulnerabilities for asthma, etc.
Ineffective Airway Clearance: The patient is unable to adequately clear their airway due to the bronchospasms associated with an asthma attack.
Impaired Gas Exchange: The patient has difficulty in exchanging gases during an asthma attack, mainly due to airway constriction.
Chronic Low Self-Esteem: The patient may have difficulty accepting their condition, leading to a chronic low self-esteem.
The patient will be able to maintain an open airway: The patient will be able to maintain adequate breathing without aid.
The patient will experience adequate oxygenation of tissues: The patient will demonstrate adequate levels of oxygen saturation.
The patient will demonstrate an improved self-esteem: The patient will demonstrate an increased ability to cope with their condition.
Provide airway management: Provide medication via inhaler or nebuliser to help open up the airways and allow for better breathing.
Monitor oxygen saturation levels: Monitor oxygen saturation levels to ensure the patient is receiving adequate oxygen levels.
Encourage the patient to be involved in their own healthcare: Empower the patient by involving them in conversations about their treatment plan. Encourage the patient to understand how their medication works, as well as how to handle street inhalers and spacer devices
Provide emotional support: Provide reassurance and support to the patient throughout the process and offer compassion and understanding.
Provide airway management: Medication administration helps to open up the airways and improves the patient’s ability to breathe.
Monitor oxygen saturation levels: Monitoring oxygen saturation levels can provide insight into the effectiveness of pulmonary interventions and patient’s health status.
Encourage the patient to be involved in their own healthcare: Involving the patient in their own healthcare process ensures that they are informed of their treatment plan, encourages compliance to prescribed medication, and improves overall patient outcomes.
Provide emotional support: Providing emotional support helps the patient to feel comfortable and cared for, as well as helping to reduce anxiety and fear.
It is important to evaluate the progress of the patient throughout the nursing care plan. At the end, evaluate the patient’s response to the interventions and check whether the goals have been achieved. Note any changes or adjustments that may be needed in the nursing plan.
A nursing care plan is an invaluable tool to assist nurses in providing comprehensive care to patients experiencing an acute asthma attack. It helps to ensure that all aspects of care are addressed, including airway management, oxygen saturation levels, patient involvement in their own care, and emotional support.
- What is an acute asthma attack?
An acute asthma attack is a sudden exacerbation of the symptoms associated with asthma, resulting in difficulty with breathing.
- What is a nursing care plan?
A nursing care plan is a set of instructions and guidelines for treatment, developed by a nurse in order to provide comprehensive care for a patient.
- How does a nursing care plan help an asthmatic patient?
A nursing care plan helps to ensure that all aspects of care are addressed, including airway management, oxygen saturation levels, patient involvement in their own care, and emotional support.
- What are the key components of a nursing care plan for an asthma patient?
The key components of a nursing care plan for an asthmatic patient include assessment, diagnosis, outcomes, interventions, rationales, evaluation and conclusion.
- What are the most common interventions for an asthma attack?
The most common interventions for an asthma attack are providing airway management, administering medication, monitoring oxygen saturation levels, encouraging patient involvement in their own care, and providing emotional support.